Started in 2015, mCaffeine is the first homegrown start-up to create caffeine-infused personal care products for a premium millennial audience. Currently, the brand offers 55 caffeine-infused products, including bathing bars, shampoos, scrubs, oils, etc. Having sold upwards of 10 million products to date, the brand has achieved cult status within the Indian D2C personal care industry.
mCaffeine has raised approx $41 million across three funding rounds and is profitable on every unit sold. Having a current GMV run rate of Rs 540 crore, the brand’s 90 percent of sales are driven via online portals and 10 percent offline.
“45 percent of the online sales come from our own D2C website while the rest are from eCommerce platforms. We aim to strengthen our offline presence and increase our sales over the next 4-6 years,” Tarun Sharma, Co-Founder and CEO, mCaffeine stated.
The brand is currently present in 12,000 stores in the general and modern trade. These stores include large retailers such as Wellness Forever and Health & Glow. It plans to expand its reach to 25,000 stores in India by the end of the next year, and 1,00,000 stores in the next five years.
“We plan to launch 15-20 products by the end of 2023. We will also be expanding to 12 countries across the globe in the next 3 years,” Sharma asserted.
mCaffeine also plans to acquire small brands from the beauty industry (across national and international markets).
Sleepy Owl as a brand promotes locally sourced coffee beans that leave a taste of real good coffee in every sip. The brand specializes in cold brew packs, hot brew bags, ready-to-drink cold brew bottles, cold coffee cans, ground coffee, premium instant coffee, and a range of merchandise.
Sleepy Owl’s vision is to disrupt the at-home coffee industry in India and give its patrons the best quality coffee in a convenient format. Early on in its journey, the brand recognized the gap in the market - the need for good quality coffee at home, made with minimal effort. This is also the story behind the innovation of its Hot Brew Bags and Cold Brew Packs. These pouches holding 100 percent Arabica Ground Coffee minimized the effort of making fresh ground coffee at home. They require no equipment or extensive knowledge of brewing. Hence, allowing Sleepy Owl to address the knowledge gap between Indian coffee consumers and brewing real coffee with their product innovation.
Sleepy Owl is currently present in over 2,200 general and modern retail stores across all metros and the majority of Tier-I cities such as Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Pune, Indore, Bhopal, Chandigarh, and Jammu amongst others.
“We view our own D2C site more as a brand-building channel, rather than a primary sales destination, partially owing to the escalating cost of customer acquisition. Approximately 60 percent of all online sales come from repeat purchases. Quick commerce and offline retail are the channels expected to deliver the best results for growth,” AjaiThandi, Co-Founder of Sleepy Owl Coffee said.
Founded by Suraj Chaudhari, Mihir Vaidya, and Harish Amritkar, Zlade aims to make premium quality razors and blades affordable and accessible across India.
“The current market scenario presents the Indian consumer with limited options, either exorbitantly priced premium brand name razors or cheap ones that compromise on quality and design. Zlade provides shaving razors made in Europe, coated with Titanium and Chromium our razors last longer and stay sharper” said SurajChaudhari, Co-founder, and Co-CEO, Zlade.
Since its inception in 2015, Zlade has witnessed a 3.8x year-on-year growth, with a turnover of Rs 5.7 crore in FY 21. The brand has raised funding of Rs 12 crore.
With an aim to establish Zlade as the market leader in the razor and blades business, the brand plans on taking a leadership position in the Manscaping category, which was first introduced by Zlade in India.
“We aim to achieve our goals via increasing our retail distribution and launching the celebrity campaign in October this year,” added Chaudhari.
Being omnichannel, Zlade is currently present in approximately 7,000 retail touchpoints including General and Modern Trade outlets and all online marketplaces including its D2C website.
India’s first mattress-in-a-box company SleepyCat is one of the internet's highest-rated mattress brands. SleepyCat’s product portfolio includes mattresses, pillows, comforters, protectors, weighted blankets, DIY beds, and pet beds to choose from.
Since its launch in 2017, SleepyCat follows a D2C business model, with 100 percent digital distribution via its website, store, and other marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, Pepperfry, CRED, Bajaj, and FinServe. The brand has been growing at a rate of almost 1.5-2x annually, for the last 2 years with over 2 lakh customers.
“Our business model is to have a 100 percent online system with D2C being a major source, and in-house manufacturing set up. This helps us to maintain excellence in quality while at the same time passing on savings of logistics costs to the consumer. So we are able to deliver great quality at direct-from-factory prices,” commented Kabir Siddiq, CEO, and Founder, SleepyCat.
In August 2021, SleepyCat raised $3.8 million in a round led by Saama Capital, with participation from existing investors, DSG Consumer Partners, and Sharrp Ventures (Mariwala family office). The brand’s current Annual Recurring Revenue is Rs 80 crore, and it aims to grow sustainably while maintaining profitability.
“We aim to be a Rs 200 crore business in the next two years with double the product range and stronger bottom line,” added Siddiq.
Incepted in 2019, The Pant Project is a brand known for its custom-made bottom-wear. Owing to the market size for premium bottomwear the brand is targeting Indian customers who are looking for high-quality pants, through its pure D2C business model.
The brand has served more than 30,000 customers across India since October 2020. “We have served customers in all parts of the country, primarily from Tier I and Tier II cities. Our customers range from 25-65-year-olds, with our core audience being working professionals in their 30s or 40s,” commented Dhruv Toshniwal, CEO and Founder, The Pant Project.
A 100 percent digital brand, The Pant Project has tried its fits with extensive product research before launch and since October 2020, has served over 50,000 pants to customers. The brand further aims to become a Rs 100 crore ARR brand within the next 2 years.
“We have built a solid team and brand foundations to reach our goal. We will continue to launch new styles and colors of pants and grow our product range, as well as expand our distribution channels to reach our goal,” added Toshniwal.
With exotic ingredients ranging from Volcanic Lava Ash from Jeju Islands, Korea, to Red Vine from Bordeaux, France, Pilgrim brings consumers beauty ingredients and rituals from faraway places. All Pilgrim products are FDA-approved, 100 percent vegan, and free from toxins like parabens, sulfates, and mineral oils – common offenders on beauty product labels.
The brand’s target group is predominantly women, aged 18 to 35 years, spread across the country. Its products are tailored to solve a very specific need for a consumer. For instance, a consumer with acne-prone oily skin and acne-prone dry skin has different needs and a different set of ingredients and formulations are required to resolve these skin concerns.
Pilgrim is a digitally native brand; its products are available only online.
“Our D2C website contributes 35 percent of total sales, while other marketplaces and online channels contribute 65 percent. Only 35 percent of our sales come from the Top 10 cities while 65 percent from Tier-I, II, and III cities and towns,” Anurag Kedia, CEO and Co-Founder, and Gagandeep Makker, Co-Founder, Pilgrim said.
Pilgrim plans to achieve an Annualized Run Rate (ARR) of Rs 150 crore by December 2022 with an NPS of 50+ across all ranges. By December 2025, it aims to achieve an ARR of Rs 1,000 crore.
Pilgrim also looks to launch in the US and Europe by 2023 through Amazon.
DaMENSCH was launched with the vision of redefining the standards of quality, aspiration, and comfort for modern men. With innovation at its core, the brand offers a range of innerwear that includes odor-canceling underwear, and thermos-regulating vests made from a curated composition of sustainable bamboo fibers to name a few.
Following an omnichannel model, the brand’s target audience includes 40 million men between the age of 15 to 34. Since its launch, DaMENSCH has witnessed a 3.3x year-on-year growth and has shipped over 100,000 products.
“Our product line reflects the brand’s ideology of innovation which started with an exceptional range of innerwear, and now creating the world’s first outerwear fashion collection with a 500-day warranty,” said Anurag Saboo, Co-founder and Director, DaMENSCH.
The brand has raised $16.4 million in series B funding from A91 Partners along with the participation of existing investors such as Saama Capital, Matrix Partners, and Whiteboard Capital.
DaMENSCH is set to launch The Innerwear Therapy Campaign featuring a new creative way of advertising and marketing, combining the latest technological offerings in ad promotions. A completely digital brand, it plans to expand offline in October 2022. Furthermore, it aims to continue 3x year or year growth offline and aims to target Rs 500 crore by 2027.
GoodDot provides alternatives to animal meat, without sacrificing taste, promoting a more sustainable food system for the world. Having sold hundreds of crores worth of plant-based meat, the brand believes to have proven India as possibly one of the largest markets for the same. The plant-based meat market in India is expected to touch $500 million in the next 3 years.
“We believe that the main reason why most people eat meat is its taste. If a product could be created which not only tasted like meat but was an ethical, healthier, and environmentally sustainable alternative to animal meat, people would happily make the switch,” said Abhishek Sinha, CEO, and Co-Founder, GoodDot.
5 years since its inception, the brand has been growing almost 100 percent year on year since 2017. Available in B2C, B2B, and D2C, GoodDot is also present across RCM stores, Reliance, D-Mart, etc; while supplying to B2B clients including Domino’s, JW Marriott, Leela, Radisson, Sofitel, Trident, etc.
With Olympic gold-medalist, Neeraj Chopra the brand has grown further and has a presence all across India, including in smaller towns. GoodDot aims to enter the international market starting with the US and Europe while maintaining its position in the Indian market.
Joker & Witch is a new-age watch and jewelry brand for millennials and Gen-Z, offering minimal, unique, and trend-setting global styles at affordable prices. Its target audience is primarily women and men in the age group of 18- 35 years, residing in metros, tier-I and II cities.
Joker & Witch is an online first brand and currently only sells through its own website and a couple of online marketplaces like Myntra, Nykaa, Amazon, Flipkart, Ajio, etc. “We currently do not have any offline presence but intend to explore the same in the years to come,” Satish Singh and Maya Varma, Founders of Joker & Witch said.
The brand aspires to become a cult watch and accessories brand emerging out of India with a global presence in the next 5 years. “We have been growing close to 150-200 percent Y-o-Y for the last 3 years and we intend to grow at a similar rate for the next 3-5 years,” the Founders added.
Apart from introducing new collections in watches and jewelry going forward, Joker & Witch intends to launch new product categories in the coming months. “We intend to introduce new brands under the same parent company foraying into multiple different categories, thus creating a ‘House of Profitable D2C Brands’ in the fashion and lifestyle space,” Varma concluded.
Pescafresh adopts the concept of ‘Shore to Door’ and ‘Farm to Fork', which ensures qualitative fresh products. In the D2C seafood and meat business, providing the products to the consumers is a bit tricky. Most of the time the consumers question about the quality and freshness of the products or whether will there be any difference between reels and real products. To overcome these types of doubtful questions, Pescafresh introduced temperature-controlled EPS boxes for home delivery. The brand owns the entire back-end supply chain, including cold chain control, procurement, processing, and storage, where the entire process is automated with zero contamination.
With technological advancement, Pescafresh has recently launched Pescalive, which showcases the ‘fresh catch of the day’, taking customers in real-time to the source.
The brand has created an end-to-end model where it has control over the farm from processing to last-mile delivery. Pescafresh has tied up with Zepto for fast deliveries. Customers can order live from its website and app.
Going forward, Pescafresh is planning to expand geographically and will soon launch its operations in Delhi-NCR and Bengaluru. The brand recently launched its operations in Pune.
“We also plan to introduce more than 100 new products. Our aim is to focus on growing our technology to make Pescalive, a live commerce platform in seafood and meats space, a better experience,” Sangram Sawant, Founder of Pescafresh stated.
Epigamia, a brand renowned for premium Greek yogurt, has revolutionized the health industry in India. With no trace of preservatives, artificial flavors, and adulterated ingredients, Epigamia was launched in June 2015.
“With innovation as the core value, Epigamia contemporizes traditional food products crafting them into healthy and tasty snacks. The portfolio encapsulates a preservative-free range of yogurts, smoothies, milkshakes, curd, and plant-based products,” said Rohan Mirchandani, CEO, and Co-Founder, Epigamia.
Positioning Epigamia as a healthy snack in the market has helped the brand grow.“Epigamia launched its own range of preservative-free and vitamin-rich milkshakes in 2021, owing to its success, the brand launched a high protein variant of these milkshakes to create a balance of health and taste for its consumers,” added Mirchandani.
Epigamia has raised a total of $49.5 million in funding over 10 rounds. Starting as an offline brand, Epigamia now has a footprint across 80 cities with the product being distributed in over 27,000 outlets. However, 60 percent of the brand’s business happens offline, while the rest happens through online channels. At present, the brand is live with 36 SKUs in the market.
Despite the challenges during the COVID lockdown, the brand’s footprint increased offline to almost more than 27,000 stores.
Co-founded by Rupali Kakade and Mohit Rathod, Truly Desi’s main objective is to find an alternative to adulterated dairy products in the market. It is an initiative driven by Gau Eco Gram Agrovikas Producer Company Limited with the objective of selling organic food products, grown by farmers from rural India with complete traceability and quality assurance.
Currently bootstrapped, 70 percent of the brand’s sales come from online channels. Truly Desi deals in desi dairy A2 products, certified organic groceries, and residue-free fruits. With its omnichannel distribution strategy, the brand has served more than 5,000 customers.
Committed to developing a sustainable system, the company intends to generate electricity through excess biogas, and later focus on fertilizers and pesticides also to be made of cow dung and cow urine. The brand also plans to enter the superfoods industry.
“In the long-term, our objective is to get into agro-tourism and traceability, where all of our products will have a QR code. Customers can scan the QR code and receive all the details about the farm, the health and diet of the cows along with their mental health as well as details about all other products available to them,” said Rupali Kakade, Co-Founder and MD, Truly Desi.
The brand currently has a pilot in process for fruits and vegetables, along with setting up a franchisee of Truly Desi. Also, the brand will be adding a range of new products to its portfolio. With only one company-owned retail store, the brand plans to expand all over Pune and Mumbai through the franchisee model.
Pee Safe started with one product to tackle the inconveniences associated with using public toilets - Pee Safe Toilet Seat Sanitizer Spray. It is a one-of-a-kind sanitizer for toilet seats; the first one to enter the market. Apart from this, Pee Safe now has an entire range of menstrual hygiene products, maternity products, intimate washes and wipes, herbal pain relief patches, sweat pads, and breast pads.
Pee Safe has an expansive distribution network with nearly 5,000 points of sale across India. It is one of the few with a healthy young company’s mix of presence across traditional brick and mortar stores, modern trade as well as leading online portals such as Amazon, Flipkart, Nykaa, and BigBasket.
“We are looking to strengthen ourselves internationally and expand our base from 15 countries to over 30 countries in the next two years and deliver revenue of over $2 million annually from such markets,” Vikas Bagaria, Founder and CEO, and Srijana Bagaria, Co-Founder and Director, Pee Safe said.
“In terms of net revenue, we’ve delivered a CAGR of over 100 percent in the past five years and we are confident to deliver a growth averaging over 75-80 percent in the next three years as well,” they added.
Organic Harvest was brought into existence in June 2013 to promote the concept of safe skin. It specializes in hair care, body care, and skincare products that are safe and highly effective.
The brand was started in the Delhi market with a presence in top retail outlets. Within 3 years of launch, the brand was available across more than 100 cities in India, covering 10K points of sale. Currently, the brand is available in offline channels via multi-brand outlets in general trade and modern trade as well as exclusive brand outlets, reaching out to more than 25K retail outlets, and 5K salons.
In the online channels, Organic Harvest is available at all leading marketplaces and its own website, and in the international market covering 10 countries including the US, UK, Canada, and Australia.
“Our digital channels contribute around 30-35 percent of our sales while the remaining 60–65 percent of our sales is contributed by our physical channels,” Rahul Agarwal, Founder and CEO, Organic Harvest.
The brand aims to become the world’s largest beauty brand in the next 2-3 years, taking its value to Rs 500 crore. “To achieve this, we have been expanding in all multi-geography and multi-sales channels. Going forward, we will expand to other markets including South East Asian countries and Australia,” Agarwal added.
Rage Coffee started in early 2019, is a digitally native FMCG company that manufactures markets, and distributes innovative coffee products. It’s the world’s first plant-based vitamin coffee brand. The company started by creating a craft coffee that is instantly consumable, affordable, comes in a variety of flavors and is ready to mix.
Rage Coffee products are retailed through its own website, all leading online platforms, and 3500+ touch points offline PAN India through a network of over 100 distributors and 5 CFAs.
“We employ an omnichannel approach, selling 50 percent of our products online and the rest offline. About 75 percent of our sales come from the website, while 25 percent is generated from sales on e-commerce platforms, including Amazon and Flipkart,” Bharat Sethi, Founder, and CEO, Rage Coffee said.
The Y-O-Y growth of Rage Coffee is 500 percent. The brand raised $5 million of growth capital as part of its Series A funding round led by Sixth Sense Ventures. Backers include Sixth Sense Ventures, Refex Capital, 9 Unicorns Venture Capital Fund, GetVantage, Rannvijay Singha, Harminder Sahni, Emarson Computers, CC One Venture Labs, Evolvx Advisory, Darshan Deora, Uday Sodhi, Ajay Sarupria, and KRS Jamwal.
“We target to grow our revenue by threefold and reach over 10,000 retailers by the end of this year. Our target is to reach close to Rs 100 crore annualized revenue in FY22 and ARR of Rs 72 crore by end of FY22,” he concluded.
Established in 2016, LetsShave is a women's hygiene brand present in 3 major categories; razors, trimmers, and related grooming products. With its target audience including all age groups, the brand caters to every segment; the value segment, the mid-segment, and the premium segment.
“Our razors fall in the range of Rs 15 and go up to Rs 400, while the trimmers begin from Rs 999 and go up to Rs 4,000. So, we are targeting all age groups, whether young or old, and all types of customers, LetsShave has products targeting all the needs,” said Sidharth S Oberoi, Founder, and CEO, LetsShave.
Bringing innovation and new technology to the shaving and grooming industry, LetsShave has numerous products backed with technology.
With an aim to build a sustainable brand and business with profit, the brand’s vision is to go from a razor blades brand to a leading lifestyle hair removal brand for men and women. “Ultimately, we plan to grow and expand our presence in every corner of the globe,” added Oberoi.
LetsShave initially started as a D2C brand, however, the brand has now expanded its operations through offline channels in 2021.
“Shifting from a purely D2C brand, we are now available in the local stores as well as in the International market. With the expansion into these channels we are looking forward to strategic alliances to compete with the Giants in the Industry,” concluded Sidharth S Oberoi.
Launched in 2019, Earth Rhythm is an environmentally conscious and sustainable home-grown brand. The first product Earth Rhythm built was shampoo bars, having the features of liquid shampoo in a bar form. Since then, the brand now has 160+ SKUs across 6 categories, including hair care, skincare, and makeup. The products are currently available on the brand’s site and also on third-party websites like Nykaa, Amazon, etc.
“We have seen a 400 percent increase in revenue YoY, and a 5x increase in orders per month, along with a 3x increase in website visits,” said Harini Sivakumar, Founder & CEO, Earth Rhythm, adding that the brand plans to achieve Rs 100 crore revenue with a valuation of Rs 500 crore by March 2023.
Earth Rhythm went for the D2C route because its consumers were looking for personalized and customized skincare products. And a less amount of investment is required in D2C to penetrate into the market.
“We were looking for a certain kind of TG typically we call them Skintellecutal consumers. In order to educate these consumers, we made them aware of the importance and functionality of ingredients. We also told them about our suppliers from where we source certain ingredients that created the experience of credibility in the consumer's mind. All of these are only possible if you are in a D2C environment,” Sivakumar stated.
Starting as an online D2C brand, Ellementry primarily offers handcrafted homeware products. Its product offerings also include kitchenware, tableware, serveware, décor, furniture, lighting, etc.
The brand has now increased its presence digitally and through brick-and-mortar stores. It is available at marketplaces like Nykaa, Amazon, TataCliq, Myntra, etc. Ellementry has also considerably increased its franchise network. As of today, there are over 4000 local artisans that are part of the Ellementry family.
Ellementry has gone international post-pandemic. It has started to ship internationally and is building on its global presence. With this regard, the brand has tied up with Lifestyle Landmark Group and launched on both online and offline channels. “We further aim to expand in the Europe and US markets,” Ayush Baid, Founder of Ellementry stated.
“Our vision is to make Ellementry a one-stop solution to all our consumer’s homeware needs. In pursuit of the same, we have recently launched our furniture division –Ellementry living with different collections. We also intend and are working towards adding more physical touchpoints to PAN India. There are efforts being made towards extending the franchise network to increase the number of touch points,” he added.
Wholsum Foods’ flagship brand Slurrp Farm aims to provide healthy, yummy, and natural snack and mealtime options for young children and their parents. Slurrp Farm’s target audience is moms, each of whom shares a universal concern - the problem of how to feed their children food that is nutritious and wholesome, while at the same time convenient for them to prepare in the midst of their busy schedules.
Slurrp Farm currently majorly retails in India through its website as well as through leading e-commerce and quick commerce platforms such as Amazon, Big Basket, First Cry, and SwiggyInstamart amongst others. Its products are also available across select leading modern trade stores in India and the UAE as well as online in the UAE, US, and the UK.
The company was born out of a concern that the current food system is broken, and requires innovation and creativity to re-introduce sustainable, nutrient-dense, and diverse ingredients back into children’s diets.
“In three years, we aim to positively impact the eating habits of at least 10 million children and provide a platform for sustainable food ingredients to become easily adopted and be working directly with farmer co-operatives to establish millets as the future quinoa or rice equivalent. We want to grow to become a house of millet-based brands made using zero junk ingredients,” said Meghana Narayan and Shauravi Malik, Co-Founders of Wholsum Foods.
Conscious clothing apparel brand Ed-a-Mamma, launched by Alia Bhatt, caters to children in the age group of 2-14 years. The brand was launched in October 2020 with about 160 products and now has 1,200 products live on its website. The products are available on all the major e-commerce platforms such as Myntra, Flipkart, TataCliq, Nykaa Fashion, Amazon, and First Cry, apart from its website.
Recently, Ed-a-Mamma expanded its business by launching its kidswear collection in the Indian market via shop-in-shops. The brand has stepped into the retail market in major metropolitan cities as well as Tier-II cities through Shoppers Stop and Lifestyle stores.
“The business grew by tenfold in the last financial year, and is expected to grow by a minimum of twofold for the next two financial years,” Iffat Jivan, Business Head, Ed-a-Mamma said.
Going forward, the brand intends to develop a strong foothold in the physical distribution model. It is also planning to launch the brand in international markets. The first phase of this initiative will mark the launch of the brand in 5 countries. There is a plan to introduce same and next-day deliveries across metro cities in India for orders placed online by the third quarter of the year.
Starting in 2018, Vedix offers customized Ayurvedic hair and skin care products. Over a short span of time, the brand has connected with more than 10 million customers who have taken its personalized questionnaire. It has delivered over 4 million orders to customers all over the country.
Vedix is one of the only digital Ayurvedic brands to be available in 10 countries including the US, Canada, UK, Australia, UAE, Singapore, and more. It launched its global operations early this year and within six months that has scaled to more than 15 percent of the brand’s overall business.
“We are one of the only D2C brands in the country to have deep Tier II and III penetration which indicates the level of trust Bharat places on us. We aim to bring Ayurveda to the world in its purest form, which means creating customized products based on Ayurvedic philosophies but delivered in modern formats,” Jatin Gujrati, Business Head, Vedix said.
“We have started the year 2022 on a positive note by launching our body care range. We expect the momentum to continue into FY23 with the launch of our baby care range and expansion into more international markets such as other EU countries, other Middle East countries, SE Asia and Japan,” he concluded.
iTokri is an online artisanal marketplace providing a range of art and craft products from across India. Following an inventory-based business model, iTokri identifies and scouts for artists and artisans, and producer groups while raising a PO.
With more than 200 members, the brand has a customer base of 3 lakh majorly from India with a portion from Europe, the Middle East, the US, and the UK, among other countries. The bootstrapped brand recorded net sales of Rs 27 crore in the last fiscal.
“We are not creating an individual brand here, but building a community-driven organization where our goal is to keep adding more artisans and showcasing their work on a global platform,” said Nitin Pamnani, Co-Founder, iTokri.
Operating as an online platform, iTokri has built a community of more than 10,000 artisans making it one of India’s largest curated portals for art and handicraft products with over 100,000 listings.
The brand aims to bring all kinds of crafts produced in different regions of India to their platform, to prevent them from getting extinct. Further, it plans to associate with new artisans in the coming years, helping them grow as artists over the next 2 years.
“Every art piece has an artisanal value but at iTokri we intend to democratize art and for that, the art needs to be functional. Aiming to provide highly aesthetic and cultural products, we plan to launch our clothing line for men, women, and kids,” added Pamnani.
D2C brand Power Gummies is known for introducing chewable vitamin gummies for good health. Within 3 years of its inception, the brand witnessed a growth of 260.27 percent in 2019 and 181.41 percent for the year 2020-22, having served more than 10,00,000 customers while selling over 60,00,000 gummies.
Online, the brand is available through its official website along with other e-commerce platforms. Having expanded internationally to Dubai and other South Asian countries, the brand is available in numerous supermarkets and stores in Tier I cities across India.
Looking forward to expanding the company's footprint, Divij Bajaj, Founder & CEO, Power Gummies said, “We want to curate a power sphere, which is to bring to the world power - a portfolio of nutritional gummies that anticipate and resolve people's problems and encourage health with a winning network of happy people and building mutual loyalty. Create a community of power people, where people are inspired to be the best they can be and most importantly, power planet, enabling everyone to be an aware, responsible, healthy and happy global citizen that makes a difference.”
With key investors such as Wipro, 9 Unicorns Accelerator, DSG Consumer Partners III, Ekta Das, VCATAS investors the brand raised $6 million and currently stands at a revenue of approximately Rs 25 crore.
The brand is all set to enter mainstream categories- multivitamins, calcium, and detox. Power Gummies plan to increase its TAM by catering to a wider range of audience making its product available at affordable price points. The company aims to launch more than 40 variants in the next 5 years with SKUs catering to everyday health issues of people, starting from the kids’ gummies segment.
Incepted in May 2022, The Ayurveda Company (T.A.C) is one of the fastest-growing D2C brands in the natural beauty and wellness segment. The brand is innovating Ayurveda, ensuring the products are sustainable with minimum carbon footprint and environmental damage.
In the last few months, T.A.C entered the retail market with 12 exclusive brand outlets (EBOs), general trade, and modern trade systems PAN India. The outlets are spread across malls of Tier-I and II cities with brand representatives available for consultations.
This way, T.A.C is now an omnichannel brand with equal spread across the physical channels as well as e-commerce platforms. Along with its website, T.A.C has onboarded over 30+ marketplaces and plans to expand to 50 in the span of a few months.
T.A.C. is on its way to becoming India's fastest startup, reaching a Rs 100 crore run rate in less than 24 months. “The journey for us will begin from there since in the next 5 years we foresee our expansion across multiple categories of Ayurveda, with revolutionary formulations and a high-quality product range at affordable prices,” Param Bhargava, Founder, and Shreedha Singh, Co-Founder & CEO, T.A.C said.
“In the bigger picture, we aim to be a part of Rs5 crore households with our solution-driven, safe and Ayurvedic range of products. In the next 5 years, we target 5x profitability making T.A.C. debut in the I.P.O. market,” they added.
With the Indian flip-flop and casual footwear market reaching $4 billion with a CAGR of 6 percent, Solethreads, a brand incepted in 2019, is an environmentally conscious unisex footwear brand led by consistent design innovations.
Solethreads follows an innovative business model to sell its products across multiple channels which include MBOs, e-commerce marketplaces, and D2C. The brand was further able to form a strategic partnership with Metro Shoes and expanded from 50 to 250 stores in a span of 2 months.
“With 22 offline distributors servicing more than 800 multi-brand retail outlets, we have strategic partnerships with Metro Mochi for over 250 stores, in online space, we are visible on AJIO, Amazon, Myntra, Flipkart, and on D2C,” said Gaurav Chopra, CEO & Co-Founder, Solethreads.
Currently, with a headcount of 60, the brand has an estimated customer base of 10 lakh, while its projected turnover is Rs 40 crore. With an urban target audience falling within the age bracket of 22-30, the brand is aiming for Rs 100 crore in net sales value in FY 24 and Rs 250 Crore in FY 25.
The brand further aims for an offline distribution with targeted expansion in 1,500 MBOs, expanding into more than 1,000 stores with metro as well as other regional or large format retail outlets.
Bombay Shaving Company was started in 2018 by launching shaving products like razors and shaving cream. It works on an omnichannel business model, working on the following platforms – e-commerce, D2C, retail, quick commerce, social commerce, and B2B.
Bombay Shaving Company (BSC) has grown 100 percent YOY with total fundraising of Rs 210 crore in 2022. These include the sixth round of financing with Rs 160 crore invested by Malabar Investments, a hedge fund based in India. Followed by the same, Bombay Shaving Company has raised Rs 50 crore from Gulf Islamic Investments.
“Currently available in close to 50,000 stores pan-India, we are exponentially growing at 25-30 percent rate Q-o-Q basis. The company has grown 5X in the last 1 year and today clocks a net ARR of Rs 150 crore - poised to touch Rs 500 crore in the next two years,” Shantanu Deshpande, Founder and CEO, Bombay Shaving Company said.
In the next two years, the brand will deploy the funds towards expanding its portfolio of personal care and hair removal products. Along with launching new products, BSC also intends to acquire brands in adjacent categories and content platforms. The brand’s ambition is to deliver 10X growth in the next 5 years.
Upakarma Ayurveda was set up in 2017, with a vision to bring Ayurvedic disruption to the wellness preferences of millennials in India. The brand inadvertently started a new movement in Indian Ayurveda by focusing on the problem and launched an improvised Ayurvedic wellness product – Shilajit - to restore the energetic balance. It is the first brand to launch Pure Shilajit Resin Form in India back in 2017 and extend its amazing health benefits to a whole new set of audience i.e. women. Upakarma Ayurveda Pure Shilajit Resin Form has been a category leader for most of the time in leading e-commerce portals since its launch.
With the success of this new product, the brand expanded its product portfolio with numerous innovative products in different categories - health, wellness, immunity, and beauty. The brand has changed the way Saffron was being sold in small plastic packaging. It introduced the finest grade quality Kesar packed in air-tight glass jars and premium boxes to retain the freshness of this spice. Upakarma Ayurveda also started the trend of useful value additions with products such as measuring spoons with Shilajit resin and droppers with Badam Rogan.
During a pandemic with unforeseen restrictions and a health scare, Upakarma Ayurveda scaled up its operations and came up with 11 new pure Ayurvedic immunity products which were much needed. It offered health and immunity products made with all-natural ingredients at affordable prices.
“Our range of Ayurvedic products aims to bring back quality to Ayurveda while promoting a healthy holistic lifestyle,” Vishal Kaushik, Co-Founder and MD, and Parag Kaushik, Co-Founder and Director, Upakarma Ayurveda said.
Upakarma Ayurveda has a D2C model which has been a viable option to sell and deliver its products directly to the consumers with no middlemen involved. “This strategy has directly connected us with our customers, which has not only helped us in understanding their behavior, interest, and need but also created a long-term relationship,” Vishal and Parag stated.
Within a short span of time, Upakarma Ayurveda has established itself among the top fastest growing D2C brands in India and the best D2C brand for Ayurveda products in India. In the last 4 years, the brand has shown over 100 percent growth year-on-year.
In India, the brand is present online on more than 30 e-commerce portals and its website. All Upakarma products are available PAN India through a network of thousands of multi-specialty stores and modern trade stores. It has successfully served more than 45 countries through its website. Upakarma Ayurveda has a strong presence in the USA and UAE through Amazon.
Swtantra, a fashion brand that focuses on a niche product category of sarees, was incepted in the year 2019. Over the years, the brand has witnessed double and triple-digit growth gaining loyal customers along the way. Believing that science of quality does not have to come at great expense, Swtantra matches the art and science of textiles and offers its products at a genuine price point.
“Our sarees have the simplicity of design with strong character in each fabric that we choose but with great quality. We are careful to offer great quality and design at affordable prices which is why we do not offer discounts or big sales,” said Tanuja Sinha Roy, Founder, Swtantra.
The Indian women's apparel market size is the 4th largest in the world, while ethnic acquires the largest share, sarees acquire the largest share within the said category which had a market share of approximately Rs 400 billion in 2021 and has been growing since.
Founded by the mother and son duo, Tanuja and Aditya, Swtantra intends to be the preferred ethnic brand for women in the mid-price segment, targeting modern, bold, elegant Indian women for mid-range occasion wear. The brand further plans to grow into luxury, especially in the international markets.
Supporting, ‘Make in India’ all of the brand’s products come from weavers across India. With its mission to make Swtantra a destination for Indian merchandise, the brand is consistently delivering outstanding value with a great customer experience.
Having more than 30 years of experience in textiles, Tanuja not only makes products for modern women but also runs Swtantra like a modern and progressive establishment. She believes the saree has been neglected for the longest time often over the concern of convenience and design and Swtantra solves them both. The product portfolio offers ready-to-wear, pre-draped, and pleated sarees which do not need to be customized once purchased.
“We help our customers with ready-to-drape and pre-draped saree options while offering a design that is bold yet minimalist and elegant. As a result, our customers love our products which come with the right designs and with quality and price in balance,” said Tanuja.
Zigly, a pet care brand with a core management team of seasoned pet parents and with the leadership of more than 15 years of experience in the industry, has catered to more than 1 lakh customers.
“Currently, we are a team of more than 100 professionals. In terms of our growth, our focus and goal are to double the customers and revenue numbers every year,” said Ambarish Sikarwar, Business Head, Zigly.
The brand went omnichannel in 2021 providing complete pet care inclusive of premium pet grooming at home, van, and at the experience center. This allowed Zigly to expand physically, now owning 5 stores.
“We launched online as a D2C platform and have further built our presence physically. With our 5 experience centers in the Delhi-NCR region, we aim to reach out to more consumers,” added Sikarwar.
The brand aims to be a part of the top 3 pet care brands in the next 3 years while it aims to expand into the top 10 cities within the first two years.
Sikarwar further stated, “We have decided to open 15-16 new stores in the next 12-13 months. In the next five years, we plan to open 150 stores and look at a revenue of close to Rs 500 crore.”
Founded in 2019, Snitch a men’s apparel brand envisions being one of the fastest growing fast-fashion brands, with its target group as the Millennials and Gen-Z falling under the age bracket of 18 to 30-year-olds.
“Most brands have been working on seasonal trends, creating season-specific collections which defy the term fast-fashion. Snitch believes in fashion to be seasonless and limitless, we launch new styles every day and it is our USP,” said Siddharth R. Dungarwal, Founder and CEO, Snitch.
Snitch is a D2C brand with 95 percent of its sales being online driven, 90 percent being from its own platform including its mobile application, while the rest is from marketplaces like Ajio, Myntra, and Bewakoof. The brand’s mobile application has over 4.68 lakh downloads contributing to around 33 percent of the revenue share. With more than 90 employees, the brand has served over 5 lakh customers, clocking a turnover of Rs 56 crore in FY 21-22.
Recently, the brand ventured into the plus-size category with Snitch Plus. Talking about the brand’s future plans, Dungarwal stated, “We are looking to launch around 6 physical stores in our top-performing cities. We are working on expanding our product line by introducing new categories such as accessories. Moreover, we are also exploring international markets for our products.”
With an increase in demand for safe and hygienic products that answer the problems associated with feminine hygiene, Sirona, has created innovative intimate and menstrual hygiene products. At present, 75 percent of its business comes from online channels.
With its target audience being from Tier I, II, and III cities aged 20-45 years old, Sirona identifies unaddressed problems that women face from puberty to menopause and guides them with products that are innovative. With products like PeeBuddy, menstrual cups, herbal pain relief patches, and anti-chafing rash cream, Sirona offers a wide range of products to its customers.
“With Sirona, we aim to address period, intimate, and toilet hygiene issues for women. Our brand offers problem-solving products as well as educational content to its customers,” said Deep Bajaj, Founder, Sirona.
Having raised Rs 120 crore, the brand has witnessed 2x growth from FY21 to FY22. Moreover, Sirona was able to hit the milestone of having more than 10 lakh menstrual cup users.
While scaling D2C is the key focus, the brand plans to be a Rs 200 crore brand in the next 2 years. Sirona plans on penetrating into the offline market, gaining a strong share in modern trade, particularly by expanding its product range in the category.
The brand was the first to launch India’s first WhatsApp period tracker for its customers.
Born in 2013, Plum is India’s first 100 percent vegan beauty brand. The brand comprises a strong portfolio of cruelty-free and non-toxic products in skincare, hair care, body care, and makeup. It raised $35 million in series C funding.
“We are currently Rs 325 crore ARR company, and we plan to scale this up to Rs 1,000 crore in the next 2 years,” Shankar Prasad, CEO, and Founder, Plum said.
With over 180 SKUs, Plum has steadily built its customer base on both online and offline platforms, having launched 8 exclusive brand outlets (EBOs) in the last year. In addition to being among the top new-age beauty brands online, the brand also now reaches over 250 towns and cities in India, through 1,100+ assisted outlets, and over 10,000 unassisted outlets.
“We are a digital-first brand with 60 percent of sales coming from the online channels while the remaining comes from offline. We plan to scale up our EBOs to 50+ in the next year,” he asserted.
Recently, the brand launched its color cosmetics category and plans to scale this aggressively in the coming months. In addition to this, it is further expanding its skincare range through the launch of more face wash variants. “Fueled by the positive response for our recently launched Onion Hair Oil and Shampoo, we also plan to expand our hair care essentials and advanced portfolios in the coming months,” Prasad concluded.
A Gen-Z F&B brand TagZ, with its innovative popped potato chips gives its customers an opportunity to give in to their cravings without compromising their health goals. Owing to its omnichannel strategy, the brand focuses equally on consumers buying from its own website as well as other e-commerce or hyperlocal channels and various premium offline stores.
Being plastic neutral, the brand has recycled over 36,000 tonnes of plastic. With its range of products, the brand is the first to introduce, popping in India, a new-age technology that uses high temperature and pressure on the finest quality potato.
Having a target group of around 30-40 million households in India and a larger market outside of India, TagZ has hit the Rs 100 crore mark in a span of 3 years.
“We have grown 9x in the last month to Rs18 crore ARR, while reducing our cash burn to less than Rs 10 lakh a month, moreover, we run our business with less than 5 percent spent on marketing,” said Anish Basu Roy, Founder CEO, TagZ.
On a mission to help urban Gen-Z consumers eat better and lead a more active lifestyle, the brand plans to continue to ramp up its product line-up in the existing categories and its manufacturing and distribution infrastructure. Currently focused on categories such as chips, dips, chocolates, and cookies the brand believes it is possible to build a Rs 1,000 crore snacking business.
On a mission to make Ayurveda a part of people’s daily life, Kapiva a homegrown D2C brand is making Ayurveda simple, modern, and accessible for everyone.
“Before the inception of the company, we conducted a market research which validated that there exists a huge demand for convenience-based Ayurveda products, further revealing that lifestyle Ayurveda products are more in demand in comparison to medicinal Ayurveda products,” said Ameve Sharma, Co-Founder, Kapiva.
The brand expanded its product portfolio as a healthcare brand by launching Ayurveda-based topical products, becoming one of the first D2C brands in the country to provide holistic wellness products to improve overall well-being.
“We look forward to diversifying our product portfolio as we aim to launch around thirty new products in the coming months,” added Ameve Sharma.
Being a product-based company, having a GMV of more than Rs 100 crore, Kapiva’s primary target audience lies between the age bracket of 26 to 57 years. Funded by Fireside Ventures, MadhuKela, GITS Foods, and the recent Series-B funding led by Vertex Ventures and 3One4 Capital, Kapiva has witnessed more than 10x growth over the last 30 months.
With its international expansion, Kapiva is targeting a global revenue of Rs 100 crore by end of FY 2024-25. The brand further aims to drive tech-enabled customized offerings to strengthen its growth strategy to become a Rs 500 crore brand in 3 years.
Fausto is a footwear brand that brings in a product portfolio created around many themes and styles to bring cult classic fashion to its customers. The brand stands for value for money and is a responsibly created fast fashion footwear brand catering to all age groups and customer segments.
With the launch of marketplaces and improvement in digital infrastructure, e-commerce was suddenly within reach of the country's entire population with as many feet to be covered, an opportunity Fausto jumped in to address.
Launching a minimum of 50 new styles every month, the brand provides one of the largest footwear catalogs with more than 2,000 SKUs. Having pioneered a back-open style of footwear range in almost all men's footwear categories, Fausto has a varied collection of footwear. The brand assures that everyone can spot more than just a few pairs of footwear that resonate with their sense of style.
"We believe in customer delight and are committed to quality, consistency, competency, and reliability further following a zero-tolerance policy on any customer complaints,” said Sumit Agarwal, Founder, Fausto.
The D2C brand is focused on creating a niche in the aspirational and fashionable yet value-for-money footwear segment for men. The brand’s one-of-its-kind online personalized store with a group of stylists makes Fausto stand out. Moreover, to improve the customer experience the brand targets to ship an order within 24 hours and deliver within 3 to 5 business days.
Over the past 4.5 years, Fausto has sold close to 7,00,000 pairs of footwear, and assuming a repeat purchase of 1.5 pairs a year, 4,50,000 customers have experienced a Fausto pair generating a loyal customer base. The brand’s online platform, launched in 2021 registered a customer base of more than 70,000 customers with a returning base of 22 percent.
The brand plans to pivot from being a D2C-only business to a tech-enabled D2C business with some significant investments being made on this front.
“We plan to move to a homegrown e-commerce platform that will offer greater flexibility and scale. Investment in a next-gen ERP and a robust OM platform integrated with leading marketplaces. Further, we plan to set up virtual experience zones leveraging Augmented Reality solutions,” said Agarwal.
Available on most of the leading online marketplaces along with its own platform, Fausto current revenue stands at Rs 12 crore. The brand is growing exponentially and aims to reach Rs 100 crore in revenue by 2025.
San Frissco manufactures all kinds of men’s footwear for the domestic market as well as some parts of the Middle East and some selected parts of Europe. The brand has been catering to the footwear needs of Indian men offering them premium quality and craftsmanship for over a decade.
The brand provides a combination of ancient and modern design techniques with the best raw materials as a testimony to India’s rich shoemaking tradition.
“We pride ourselves on our incisive and in-depth research and an unquenchable thirst to constantly innovate and evolve in tune with the men who wear our shoes. Our ever-growing base of loyal clientele is a result of our dedication to this craft. San Frissco shoes are not mere shoes, they’re statement pieces, designed to transcend the test of time and trends,” said Kuldeep Singh, Founder, San Frissco.
Beginning operations in 2010, the footwear brand simply catered to the middle-aged men of India with simple classic footwear. Today, its target customer falls between the age group of 20 to 50, covering a major portion of the working population.
Initially started with an investment of about Rs 2 lakh, San Frissco grew in business attracting finance institutions and banks to come in with their funding proposals. Currently standing tall at a turnover of around Rs 32 crore, the brand has witnessed a 30 percent year-on-year growth for the last 2 years and with around 350 employees the brand has a customer base of 20 lakh.
Having already marked its presence in the footwear industry via online and offline platforms, San Frissco is a B2C and D2C brand and has a presence on all leading e-commerce portals. Through these platforms, the brand offers exclusive collections and offers to its customers.
“We have already started analyzing the demand of our consumers and are upgrading our technological tools and software that are necessary to stay afloat and to keep serving our loyal customers a smooth and satisfactory shopping experience,” added Singh.
With an increase in screen time, most individuals are focused on their social media presence, which makes San Frissco founder believe it to be the best time for a growing brand, to create brand awareness, get recognition and capture the market.
Looking forward to going omnichannel, the brand has already begun research to strategize cross-border e-commerce.
Estele has been an established fashion jewelry brand since its inception in 1989. In an attempt to create an impact enterprise that would be a women majority enterprise, most of the brand’s products are designed, manufactured, and sold by women.
With its target audience being women between the ages of 15-50 years, Estele follows business models including D2C, B2B2C, and B2B for its international markets. With its complete focus on the fashion jewelry space, it aims to be the one-stop shop for every woman’s fashion jewelry needs.
Being a Make in India brand since the early 2010s, Estele is constantly investing in its factories to become better and more efficient to enable price competitiveness ensuring a market differentiating factor. Besides, 95 percent of Estele’s jewelry is produced by the brand which enables it to ensure warranty, guarantee, and service programs for fashion jewelry.
“Our focus towards manufacturing and ‘Make in India’ enables us to offer over 40,000 SKUs to our customers and enables faster go to market for viral trends in the age of social media,” said Youhan Noria, Chief Business Officer, Estele.
Following its women-majority enterprise, Estele has over 350 employees in its retail and manufacturing arms with 75 percent being women. Moreover, in order to make a sustainable sale, the brand follows an ethical pricing structure, offering value to its customers. Estele continues to work with distributors that have enabled it to have 800 points of sale and aims to reach over 3,000 in the next 3 years.
Lockdown 2020 is the brand’s inflection point and Estele started its online operations. Due to the accelerated growth, it witnessed in the online space, today the brand is 50 percent physical and 50 percent digital and intends to become completely omnichannel by 2024.
Over the past 3 decades, Estele has reached over 40 million households indirectly and over 5 million households directly. Furthermore, the brand has witnessed around 100 percent year-on-year growth with its Monthly Marketing Revenue (MRR) being Rs 3.25 to Rs 3.5 crore of its Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) and aims to reach a target of Rs 50 crore Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) by next few months.
Apart from the Indian market, Estele products have an international presence too with countries like Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Uganda, Kenya, Hong Kong, the USA, and Indonesia to name a few. Estele plans to launch different products in a phased manner, while increasing its physical touchpoints to 3,000, building upon its omnichannel offering with special emphasis on the website.
“We will be opening 100 exclusive stores, intending to build on our long term with MBOs such as Shopper Stop, Landmark Group, Reliance, Spencer’s and further deepen our partnerships with marketplaces such as Amazon, Flipkart, AJIO, Myntra, Nykaa, and others” added Noria.
Men’s apparel brand The Bear House began its operations in 2017 and bases its core sensibilities on mastering elements of design in individual garments, keeping the look crisp, uncluttered, and effortless. Moreover, the team has the experience of manufacturing over 200 million shirts for some of the leading global brands before kick-starting The Bear House. Starting with men’s shirts in India, the brand has expanded its product portfolio.
“The Bear House intends to be a company that fully imbibes the ideals of ‘Make in India’, and at the same time bring a global outlook in both the quality and design elements. This ensures that the ever-growing youth of the country have access to affordable luxury,” said Harsh Somaiya, Co-Founder, The Bear House.
With an employee strength of over 50, the company has been extensively designing its own custom fabrics, selecting precise colors, patterns, and construction to achieve the ideal look, comfort, and feel. Also, the company uses computer-generated patterns, robotic fabric cutters, and technologically advanced machinery, with the hand-sewn assembly of products by experienced tailors.
“Our products are unique and aspirational because of the attention given to every little detail along the entire process. We spend a lot of time in the pre-design phase before we get to the drawing board. Thereafter it’s the tailoring, fabric selection, and the best of trims to complete creating a product that’s worthy of sporting The Bear House tag,” added Somaiya.
While the company has grown over the years, it was during the pandemic the brand introduced new products as per the demands of the market. It scaled its production, offering to have a wide range of loungewear, resulting in 2x year-on-year growth of its business.
The Bear Store’s marketplace growth contributed to 90 percent of its business which has been exponential, while customer growth on the website has been consistent since it started in the second half of 2021.
With a vision to become an all-inclusive global fashion apparel brand, catering to the ever-changing fashion industry, the company aims to continue its aggressive growth trajectory. It aims to achieve growth in 3 phases; the marketplace where it will continue the same, the website where the company is focusing on scaling its business and sales, and offline, where the brand plans to slowly enter targeting MBOs in metros and later Tier II cities.
WickedGud started its journey with pasta and instant noodles in 2021. It is India’s first pasta brand to have manufactured pasta with the following six ingredients - chickpea, red lentil, moong dal, brown rice, buckwheat, tapioca starch, flaxseed, and guar gum. The brand’s intent is to get across categories where indulgence and nourishment as a confluence was unthinkable and disrupt them with its offerings.
“When we launch a product category, we’re already working on the next one and probably experimenting on the next, next one too. So for now, we offer pasta and instant noodles, and we would be ready with our WickedGud range of hakka noodles, oats, sauces, malted beverages, and more in the next few months,” Bhuman Dani, Founder & CEO, WickedGud said.
The brand products are currently available on its own website in addition to Amazon India, BigBasket, Flipkart Grocery, Blinkit, CRED, and other marketplaces. WickedGudis also a part of Amazon’s Global Seller Program and is already selling on Amazon US. Additionally, WickedGud has also been inducted into the prestigious, invite-only Amazon Top Brands program for the UK and EU markets even before its launch in those markets. The brand shall also be launching in the UAE market by October 2022.
Having already launched into a cumulative category size of over Rs13,000 crore, the plan is to consolidate and dive deeper into the various consumer segments. “The aim is to become a Rs 1,000 crore ARR brand by 2027, and establish WickedGud as one of the most prolific, indigenously built Health food brands of India, serving locally as well as globally,” Dani added.
The brand’s target audience is millennial mothers, modern, progressive women within the age group of 32-42 years, and Generation Gen Z, 13-25 years digital savvy, pop-culture interested, and most importantly health-conscious consumers who are gradually waking up to the role food plays in their healthy lifestyle.
Established in 2019, Burger Bae is a sustainable streetwear clothing brand. The brand was incepted with a vision to diminish the line between high-end fashion and streetwear to create a more unified clothing line. Falling into the $20 billion India’s social e-commerce for apparel segment and the $1 trillion clothing industry, globally, the brand aims to revolutionize fast fashion.
With college students, young professionals, and travelers falling under the age group of 13 to 30 years as its target audience, Burger Bae has served around 100,000 customers following B2C and B2B business models.
A socially inspired, community-designed, content-driven clothing line, the brand aims to be faster than fast fashion. Using an innovative method, Burger Bae empowers creators with their partners at HYPD, to monetize their content.
These creator-generated niches are then launched as collections, which depending upon their performance are made into a separate brand identity under its group, BXB SOCIALS. Burger Bae then looks into manufacturing, logistics, and customer care, while empowering the creators to be entrepreneurs.
“Our strong belief is that our creators understand their niche better than hired experts. We aim to provide an ecosystem where they are empowered and have the creative freedom to do what they are good at,” said Rohan Kashyap, Founder, Burger Bae.
Being based out of Ludhiana, and close to many export houses, the brand gets early access to trends and tech, moreover, the minimum order quantity issue becomes easier to address.
Burger Bae believes stitching is an art and provides an ecosystem for Masterji, who like other artists, need an ecosystem, which then reflects in the quality of the brand’s apparel.
Starting informally in 2018, Burger Bae has scaled up to Rs1 crore in monthly sales. Moreover, the brand raised an investment of Rs 35 lakh and Rs 50 lakh from Velocity and Getvantage in 2 debt rounds which were paid back within 3 and 5 months, respectively.
Using social media influencers to generate a brand recall value, most customers of Burger Bae have come across the brand via social media and pop-up exhibitions.
“Until now, it was mostly Facebook ads that helped us gain the consumers. However, we are planning to accelerate pop-ups and events. Festivals are one of our primary focuses, which gives us a good community pool, also it would allow our potential customers to get a sense of our products,” added Kashyap.
Shipping worldwide, the brand processes orders within 5 to 7 business days in India and 7 to 16 days overseas.
The brand is currently in the works to build a separate event company and plans on exploring the NFT space.
CloudTailor is a D2C platform that provides end-to-end fashion and tailoring solutions at the consumers’ fingertips with access to fashion designers' consultation, doorstep measurements, and free lifetime alterations. It is the world's first phygital personalized fashion brand. It tailors any style, any design, and ships globally.
CloudTailor operates on unit economics profitability at the city level which helps it to get EBITDA positive at city level operations. Tailoring services work on a high margin with a high repeat purchase. “We enjoy 60 percent repeat purchases and continue to grow. We are growing at 15-20 percent month-on-month, and intend to grow at a much faster rate as we follow a phygital model,” Susmitha Lakkakula, Founder, and Rudra Pratap and Mahesh Patel, Co-Founder of CloudTailor said.
CloudTailor operators on the phygital business model where omnichannel plays a crucial role. Its customers have access to CloudTailor through different channels such as an app/website for digital orders, exclusive branded outlets as a physical touchpoint for interacting with the brand, and SIS (store-in-store) model, partnering with large format stores and providing tailoring services within the outlets.
“We believe it is important to be present across the entire customer purchase cycle for discovery. Our Hub-and-Spoke business model allows us to cater to all orders seamlessly,” Lakkakula stated.
Currently, the brand has 20 EBOs and 8 SISs. The brand has recently expanded its presence by opening 8 fulfillment centers located in Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Delhi NCR, Pune, Patna, Ahmedabad, Siddipet, Tirupati, and Kochi. It has also launched its 8 Experience Centers in Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Siddipet, Tirupati, and Kochi. CloudTailor aims to open another 20 EBO by the end of September in Delhi, Pune, Gurgaon, Noida, Ghaziabad, Gandhinagar, Bangalore, and Hyderabad.
As the brand is at the initial stages of our business, brand awareness is its main focus. It is marketing through different channels such as ATL, BTL, digital channels (social and performance marketing), and PR where it is not just educating its customers about the brand but also about fashion in general.
CloudTailor aims to be the one-stop shop for all things fashionable for women. “In this journey, our immediate plan is to open 200 EBOs and 100 SISs spread across India, US, UK, and Australia,” Lakkakula asserted.
The brand has a commitment of $1 million from India Discovery Fund I, 35North Ventures along with Mergerdomo, which has led the seed fund. “We are also in early discussion for our Pre-series A fund which will be utilized in the expansion of our branded outlets, increasing our brand awareness and tech enhancement,” she added.
VAHDAM India is a vertically integrated brand that is taking India’s finest teas, superfoods, herbs, and spices to consumers across the world, under an ethical, sustainable, and proud home-grown brand, direct from the source while giving back to society.
All VAHDAM teas, spices, herbs, and superfoods are sourced directly from plantations and farmers within days of harvest, packaged garden fresh at its BRC Certified state-of-the-art facility, one lakh square feet in size in the National Capital Region of India, and shipped directly to global fulfillment centers in various parts of the world.
VAHDAM is now a net profitable company. The contribution margin on average is 40 percent. The brand has raised over Rs 290 crore in funding so far, spread across 4 rounds from some of the top investors in the country. The first fundraise was in January 2017 and the last one was in September 2021.
VAHDAM India has made a market entry via an online channel. Digital channels let the brand micro-target the market and help it to compete with the big brands as brands come under the same pedestrian when they bid for a click on Amazon, Facebook, or Google.
Focus on Marketing
The brand is primarily focusing on digital media as it helps Vahdam micro-target. Digital media also helps us to reach out to more consumers. Besides, one of the core things that it does as a brand is sampling. “Given ours is a consumer product, we do a lot of brand sampling in every market. We do partner data sampling through a bunch of methods that get us the highest ROI in terms of our brand marketing initiatives,” Sarda noted.
Additionally, the brand also does an annual national campaign in key markets right before the holiday season to get at the top of the mind of the consumers that it is looking to target.
In the US, which contributes to over 65-70 percent of VAHDAM’s revenue, VAHDAM is one of the fastest-growing tea brands. Apart from being listed in over 60 online marketplaces, 12 Amazon’s, VAHDAM is also the only Indian brand to be available in over 1500 premium chains in the US that include Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale, Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue, Wegmans, Erewhon Market, Macy's and more. It is also available in over 200 stores in Canada and over 400 stores in the UK.
Since its inception in 2015, Licious has not just worked towards building India’s largest tech-first, full-stacked, D2C animal protein brand, but also revolutionizing the category itself. The brand is extremely proud of the fact that it has yet again shifted the paradigm and become the first unicorn in the D2C space.
The Bengaluru-based company has a current revenue run-rate of Rs 1,000 crore. The company claims to deliver around 1.5 million orders per month. In fact, Licious prides itself on having built a cult following with 90 percent of the business consistently coming from repeat customers. The typical Licious consumer is urban, Sec A, A+.
At present, Licious operates in 14 Indian cities, viz, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, NCR, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Jaipur, Coimbatore, Kochi, Puducherry, Vizag, Vijayawada, and Kolkata. The company has been planning to consolidate its presence in India and expand to global markets.
D2C: A Way Forward
D2C has the obvious advantage of direct consumer connect that helps the brands identify gaps and position their products accordingly. However, they also must go through the rigor of building a robust infrastructure that can sustain growth and enable quick scale-up.
This needs a bottom-up approach and discipline from Day 0 - a rare accomplishment that Licious was able to unlock. The achievement of Licious Unicorn status is expected to not only further the journey of the brand but unlock the next level of opportunities for the animal protein sector through an inflow of investment, talent, and the emergence of more start-ups that will help raise the bar in all aspects.
“As the category leader, we aim at paving the way for the second wave of young start-ups that can join hands in fully harnessing the potential that the industry has to offer. We will continue to build the category through investments in technology for supply chain excellence, product innovation, talent, and vendor partner upgrades,” Abhay Hanjura and Vivek Gupta, Founders of Licious said.
“In the coming years, you will see Licious work towards building a sustainable, responsible business that will reimagine the animal protein category in India through an optimal mix of global influence and products curated for the Indian palate,” Hanjura further added.
Licious received a seed investment of Rs6.9 crore from T.V. Mohandas Pai, Manipal Global Education Services, and entrepreneur Kanwaljit Singh.
In 2016, the company raised a Series A round of funding of about Rs21 crore from Mayfield Capital and 3one4 Capital.
In the first quarter of 2017, Licious received a Series B round of investment with Rs 69 crore from existing and new investors, including Mayfield India, 3one4 Capital, Sistema Asia Fund, and Neoplux Technology fund.
In September 2018, Licious raised Rs 174 crore in a Series C round of investment. The round was led by Bertelsmann India Investments and Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia & India (part of the Vertex Holdings network of funds). The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), also invested in the company along with existing investors Mayfield India, 3one4 Capital, Sistema Asia Fund, and InnoVen Capital.
In December 2018, Licious raised another Rs 174 crore in a Series D round of investment. The round was led by Japan's publicly listed conglomerate Nichirei Group. Existing investors 3one4 Capital, Bertelsmann India Investment, Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India, UCLA, and Sistema Asia Fund were other contributors.
In December 2019, Licious raised $30 million in its Series E round, led by Singapore-based Vertex Growth Fund. Several existing investors returned, including 3one4 Capital, Bertelsmann India Investments, Nichirei Corp, Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India, and Sistema Asia Fund.
In October 2021, Licious shifted the paradigm by emerging as India’s first D2C Unicorn. The tech-powered, D2C fresh animal protein brand achieved a billion dollars valuation post receipt of funding worth $52mn led by IIFL AMC’s Late Stage Tech Fund. Avendus FLF also participated in the round.
In March 2022, Licious raised its Series F2 by $150 mn. Series F2 is led by Singapore-based Amanda Capital, along with Kotak PE & Axis Growth Avenues AIF - I. Existing investors have also participated in the round along with prominent angel investors including Nithin and Nikhil Kamath of Zerodha, BoAt’s Aman Gupta, and Haresh Chawla, Partner, True North.
Started in 2016, Honasa Consumer Pvt. Ltd. (HCPL), the parent company of Mamaearth, The Derma Co., Ayuga, and Aqualogica, is a house of brands creating purpose-driven personal care brands for millennials. It is catering to the digitally savvy audience across India and Bharat, with Bharat showing phenomenal potential in wanting unique and innovative product propositions.
HCPL is a digital-first brand and it has helped it to reach out to the consumers directly and connect with them to understand their requirements and provide them with products that serve their needs. “We are on a constant quest to solve millennial personal care concerns, so as and when we identify a gap, we will start working towards filling it, either with our current portfolio of brands or venture into launching new brands,” Ghazal Alagh and Varun Alagh, Co-Founders of Mamaearth said.
The company is currently catering to over 19,000 pin codes and more than 500 cities in India across the country. The brand retails through the brand website and marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, Nykaa, and FirstCry amongst others.
Due to the demand for products offline, the company launched Mamaearth across offline channels. Recently, Mamaearth opened its first EBO in Delhi and 2 EBOs in Mumbai and will be retailing all the product ranges of baby care along with beauty and personal care.
“Over the last 18-20 months, offline has shown tremendous growth in terms of scale and revenue. Every brand needs to be selling at places where their consumers shop; hence offline will continue to grow in the coming year. We have recently ventured into Mamaerath Exclusive Brand Outlets last year, as a strategic experiment and we will decide the next steps on that basis of performance, but the initial reads are very promising. However, we are a digital-first company, and our focus will always be to build digital-first brands,” Ghazal Alagh elaborated.
House of Brands
As a company, its goal is to take the highest share of the wallet of the consumer in the beauty and personal care space. While building Mamaearth, the co-founders realized that they were not only building a great brand but we were also building some great capabilities as a corporate and those capabilities might be R&D, marketing to millennials, technology stacks, D2C muscle, etc and those capabilities can actually be used to build new mixes and hence take the share of that proposition that the consumer is looking for.
Apart from Mamaearth, The Derma Company, and Aqualogica, the other brands that are there in the kitty of HCPL are Ayuga, Dr Sheth, and BBlunt.
“Our core strength is building and hence our strategy would always be skewed towards building our own brands and launching our own mixes. That said, wherever we see an opportunity where we feel that a brand can be a very good add-on to our portfolio, we will not hesitate from adding that. We will also look at inorganic as a mode of expansion, but otherwise organic is what we are far more keen and excited about,” Varun Alagh stated.
“We want to make Honasa Consumer Pvt. Ltd. a leading House of brands of digital-first brands and become the number one choice of Indian millennials in the beauty and personal space,” he further added.
Backed by Sequoia Capital India, Sofina SA, Fireside Ventures, and Stellaris Venture Partners, HCPL is set to become a billion-dollar FMCG conglomerate in the next 5 years - spread across the globe but connected through a digital center of excellence.
For the coming year, the brand is focusing on building its new brands and venturing into new categories with existing brands. Aqualogica is a new brand that it launched this year, and the company will direct all its efforts towards building that.
Apart from this, HCPL has entered into the color cosmetics category with Mamaearth bringing with it an innovative line of toxin-free, made safe certified products across sub-categories like liquid lipsticks, bullet lipsticks, kajals, lip balms, and more innovations in the pipeline.
“At present, 70 percent of our revenue comes from online channels and the rest 30 percent from offline channels. We are servicing almost 18-19,000 pin codes from our D2C channel and 60 percent of our business comes from Tier-II and beyond,” Ghazal concluded.
HCPL was announced as the first unicorn of 2022 raising a $52 million round led by Sequoia. The round witnessed participation by Sofina Ventures SA, the Belgium-based investment company, and Evolvence, a UAE-based India-focused fund.
SUGAR Cosmetics, one of India's fastest-growing beauty brands, was founded by Vineeta Singh in 2015, with a single-point agenda of creating world-class makeup products with high pigmentation that specifically catered to the Indian skin tone. SUGAR Cosmetics is currently among the Top 3 color cosmetics brands in India.
SUGAR Cosmetics has raised a total of $85.5 million in funding over 4 rounds, including the recent $50 million from its Series D round led by L Catterton, a consumer-focused private equity firm.
With a vision of building SUGAR as ‘fast fashion for the face’, Singh advocates a fast-paced work culture where speed and experimentation lead the way for rapid innovation and a launch-packed calendar. The women-centric brand, with a focus on core business fundamentals and an innate understanding of the customer and her needs, boasts a workforce with over 75 percent being women.
Inspiration to Begin
Indian millennial women started wearing makeup regularly as a feel-good accessory only in the last decade. Their biggest pain was constant re-application of their makeup and nothing would last them from morning to night. Many global brands had shades that weren’t designed keeping Indian women in mind and that made a huge difference in how product shades looked on them. So, when SUGAR launched matte, long-lasting makeup with shades for India, the brand grew virally through women talking about it on Instagram. More than 2 lakh online reviews with 4 to 5-star ratings made the product-market fit evident.
An Omnichannel Brand
Starting as a direct-to-consumer (D2C) cosmetics brand, SUGAR has built its presence in both online and offline channels. Apart from its own website, the brand is available across all major e-commerce platforms like Amazon, Myntra, Flipkart, Nykaa, etc. Nykaa has been its oldest partner and continues to deliver the highest numbers although the other channels have been aggressively scaling, especially over the last two months.
In the offline space, the brand has a distribution network of over 40,000 branded retail outlets in more than 540 cities. In brick-and-mortar format, SUGAR is available in High-street Stores, Exclusive Brand Outlets, Kiosks, and more. Besides, the brand is available across all leading large format retailers such as Shoppers Stop, Lifestyle, Central, Health & Glow, NewU, etc. Lifestyle has been its oldest partner and narrowly leads the contribution for the brand across all offline channels
On social media, SUGAR has a fan base of more than 5 million women, and on its own website and app, it gets more than 10 million unique visitors every month, making it one of the largest digital-first brands in India. The brand-owned app has garnered over 4 million downloads to date.
Vineeta Singh, Co-Founder and CEO, SUGAR Cosmetics said, “While D2C contributes 30 percent to our revenue, 60 percent of our current sales come from retail stores across the length and breadth of the country as compared to a pre-pandemic when they used to contribute 35 percent.”
The company stands at a current annualized revenue run rate of Rs 550 crore and is in line to double its revenue in the next 12 months.
The brand’s products are sold in over 40,000 stores, with an aim to be present in 100,000 stores by the end of the financial year 2024.
“We plan to focus on building and expanding our core pillars - retail footprint by enhancing the retail marketing & visual merchandising experience, product line, distribution channels, content, and community. We intend to go stronger on our omnichannel approach by building an even stronger D2C base across all our platforms,” Singh stated.
“Continuing to build a strong community - we also will be focusing on creating solid content to keep educating and engaging our SUGAR community across all platforms – digital and otherwise. We will also be strategically collaborating with like-minded personalities, IPs, and events. While this journey of making SUGAR one of the Top 3 Makeup brands in India has been phenomenal, we do envision employing more than 10,000 women and a public listing,” she added.
boAt has established leading market positions in volume and value terms in India across multiple, high-growth consumer categories such as audio and smartwatch. It is a digital-first consumer products company and one of the largest Indian digital-first brands in terms of revenue from operations for the financial year 2021.
Initially, the brand began its journey with hearables products within the audio category. It now offers products across a variety of price points and customer segments across multiple product categories, which comprise audio (wired headphones and earphones, wireless headphones and earphones, true wireless stereo, Bluetooth speakers and home theatre systems and sound bars), wearables (smartwatches), gaming accessories (wired and wireless headsets, mouse and keyboards), personal care appliances (trimmers and grooming kits), and mobile accessories (chargers, cables, power banks, and other accessories).
“We seek to identify fast-growing, lifestyle-oriented product categories with high consumer engagement and large market opportunities and disrupt the incumbent industry landscape. We endeavor to achieve this by launching distinctive and aspirational products having a clear value proposition at accessible prices, specifically tailored for the Indian audience and marketed towards the rapidly emerging online audience of young, digitally-enabled and trend-conscious consumers in India,” Aman Gupta, Co-Founder and CMO, boAt Lifestyle said.
“Our product mix has evolved significantly over the past several years as we have successfully entered into new product categories and diversified our business. For the year ended March 31, 2019, 96.01 percent of our revenue from operations was derived from the audio category. For the six months period ended September 30, 2021, 83.13 percent of our revenue from operations was derived from the audio category, 14.05 percent from the wearables category, and 2.82 percent from the other category,” he further added.
As of September 30, 2021, for the second quarter of Financial Year 2022, the brand was ranked number 1 in India among the wireless hearables brands by value and volume, and number 2 among smartwatch brands in India in terms of volume (as per IDC). “Moreover, our market share in both wireless hearables and smartwatch segments has consistently increased over time, and for the quarter ended September 30, 2021, we had a market share of 48 percent and 23 percent in terms of volume, and 30 percent and 13 percent by value, in the branded wireless hearables and smartwatch markets, respectively,” Gupta asserted.
As per the RedSeer Report, digital-first brands are better positioned to track customer journeys and transactional behavior than offline-first legacy brands. “We believe that this allows us to better understand consumer behavior and derive sharp insights which help us better predict and understand shifts in preferences for our products,” he stated.
The brand’s digital-first approach provides it with near real-time consumer feedback through ratings and reviews, as well as the ability to track its customers’ purchase journey and engage with them on a continual basis. These elements of a digital-first approach help it gain insights into consumer behavior and understand and predict shifts in preferences for its products, in turn helping the brand in better demand forecasting and new product development.
boAt’s digital-first approach provides it with the ability to launch new products and SKUs at a lower cost and at greater speed as compared to traditional offline channels. As a result, this approach allows it to offer a wide assortment of products as well as build depth across several sub-categories, thereby addressing various nuanced consumer needs. “We launched 40, 70, 77, 45 new SKUs in the financial years ended March 2019, 2020, 2021 and six months period ended September 2021 respectively,” he explained.
As a digital-first consumer products company, a large portion of boAt’s sales is derived from the online channel, which includes online marketplaces such as Amazon and Flipkart, and its own website. For the financial years, 2019, 2020, and 2021 and the six months period ended September 30, 2021, sales from online channels constituted 85.11 percent, 86.47 percent, 87.67 percent, and 86.16 percent of its revenue from operations, respectively, with the remainder derived from offline channels.
“We continue to maintain strategic relationships with online marketplaces and regularly collaborate with them on marketing initiatives and understanding consumer preferences and purchasing behavior. Given the existing and rapidly developing e-commerce ecosystem in India and its enabling infrastructure, our products are currently available to consumers located in approximately 90 percent of pin codes across India,” he concluded.